UK sixth form college enters Swiss market

August 15, 2013

Oxford International Centre (OIC), a UK-based sixth form college, has expanded into the Swiss market to teach students a wide variety of A-level and iGCSE subjects plus special master classes in art and design.

Oxford International College Switzerland is based in the idyllic mountain village of Chateau D'Oex.

The new school is located in Chateau D’Oex, an idyllic Swiss mountain village, and is the product of a joint venture between Barbara and Pascal Lorenzetti, co-Founders, and Mario Peters, Director and Principal of Oxford International College, UK.

Peters observed that the establishment of OIC’s overseas campuses – it also has a school in China – have been borne out of personal relationships. “Barbara’s daughter was studying the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma at one of the leading boarding schools in Switzerland, but was finding that the IB did not play to her strengths,” he said, adding that the family researched into alternatives, including the UK A-level, and later enrolled their daughter at OIC in Oxford.

“Barbara must have been impressed by the transformation she observed in her daughter’s development, and this gave her the idea to establish a small, A-level tutorial college in Switzerland to provide an alternative to the big IB schools that dominate the market [in Switzerland],” said Peters.

Like its UK counterpart, OIC Switzerland will offer iGCSE, GCSE and A-level qualifications to Swiss and international pupils aged between 14 and 18, with a strong emphasis on personal development and university preparation.

In addition, OIC Switzerland will deliver a specialised Master Art Programme, in collaboration with Franck Bouroullec – a highly regarded international artist. “Endowed with a high quality portfolio, our students [will be] ready, technically and emotionally, for admission to the best art schools around the world, such as Kingston University, Goldsmiths University, Les Gobelins School of Image Paris and ESAG Penninghen Paris,” vouched its website.

“We believe there is an explosion of students from Asia and the Eastern Bloc wanting to study Art & Design in Europe and then go onto famous art schools in the UK, such as University of the Arts London which includes Chelsea Art College,” added Les Webb, Managing Director of UK-based agency Education Advisers, who is helping to promote the school to the overseas market.

The new school is a valuable addition to the OIC portfolio, confirmed Peters, and they are keen to explore how the three international campuses (UK, China and Switzerland) can benefit and support each other through student exchanges and shared programming. He added, “This venture provides a unique new addition to the international sector for students seeking a high quality, highly personal education in one of the world’s leading regions for education.”

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